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Out of idle curiosity, are there any advantages - I mean rather material ones, besides the respect of the community and all that - that the trilogy's moderators enjoy for being moderators? Access to Fog Creek's Gym and canteen? A place to crash whenever they're in San Francisco? Booking hours on Jeff Atwood's Learjet? Or is it the sheer fun of it, something that (as we all know) works pretty well for the site overall?

After all, being a moderator can be quite an amount of work - and as it's being brought to you, and at least some participation is somewhat expected, it's work with a capital W. Also, the elevated status and power of The Moderator is (quite rightly) bound to make your actions subject to increased scrutiny from the community, and it can happen that you have to defend your actions in front of a critical audience.

Is the "job" (and status) and the fun doing it so rewarding in itself that there is no need for reimbursement of any kind? Maybe moderating duties are much lighter than they may seem from the outside? Is SO more a part of your life as a Moderator than before?

Just being curious about how things work.

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Being a moderator is real, ultimate power. –  Gnome Apr 8 '10 at 22:11
    
    
Time warp and mind reading. –  perbert Apr 9 '10 at 1:18
    
The power to tame unicorns? –  dmckee Apr 9 '10 at 14:07
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More interesting now that there are a whole lot more moderators around. –  C. Ross Oct 8 '10 at 22:24

3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

We get to see new questions 5 minutes before they're posted to the front page. It's like subscribing to Slashdot. Sheer awesomeness.

We also get our pick of souls. MMmmmmm, fresh souls.

Though come to think of it I'd love a free place to crash next time I'm in SF...

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We also get to see questions before they're posted to the front page, by using the sooper seekrit "Questions" tab. –  Aarobot Apr 8 '10 at 22:29
    
Can you only take the souls of those with a certain rep? Am I safe? Are any of us safe?!? –  Phoshi Apr 8 '10 at 22:30
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@Phoshi: You can tell who they've gotten because they become the next crop of moderators. –  mmyers Apr 8 '10 at 22:32
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@mmyers: bingo. it's like the rage virus with... less blood, more vitamin D deficiency and melanin loss. –  quack quixote Apr 8 '10 at 22:40
    
<insert Jon Skeet reference here> –  Earlz Apr 8 '10 at 22:52

Well, along with page-1 users, the SU mods are getting SU t-shirts, apparently!

I like to imagine they'll be wearing them while they moderate, like a uniformed police officer. (Or cop, to our American friends)

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I am American and obviously have no idea what the word "police" means. –  Earlz Apr 8 '10 at 21:56
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@earlz: I think they're something like bobbies. –  mmyers Apr 8 '10 at 22:05
    
@earlz: I'm glad to have been able to help! –  Phoshi Apr 8 '10 at 22:06
    
Well I hope they do get T-Shirts! Although this conversation meta.stackexchange.com/questions/38018/… seemed to indicate that they don't. I hope that has changed. –  Pëkka Apr 8 '10 at 22:11
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(Or copper, to our friends across the pond.) –  Gnome Apr 8 '10 at 22:15
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It's really too bad there are no meta shirts.. :( –  Ether Apr 8 '10 at 22:15
    
@Pekka: I got an e-mail thismorning saying that the SU team would love to give page 1 users and moderators a t-shirt! –  Phoshi Apr 8 '10 at 22:29
    
@Pekka, we are getting them, at least I got the email, and I know of at least one other guy who did (meta.stackexchange.com/questions/45891/…). –  heavyd Apr 8 '10 at 22:35
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@mmyers Is that like P.C. 31? –  Michael Todd Apr 8 '10 at 22:38
    
@Michael Todd: Sorry, you've lost me, and Google is no help. –  mmyers Apr 8 '10 at 22:45
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@mmyer Oh...Beatles reference. Maxwell's Silver Hammer. P.C. stands for Police Constable. (Of course if you have to explain it, it's no longer funny. Ah, well.) –  Michael Todd Apr 8 '10 at 22:47

I've received some free stickers and a free t-shirt out of the deal. Oh, and Jeff occasionally returns my emails. The Stack Overflow related ones. He still ignores the random ones. :(

To address your questions directly:

Is the "job" (and status) and the fun doing it so rewarding in itself that there is no need for reimbursement of any kind?

Yes, the extra abilities are nice. I wish I were granted the ability to delete spam accounts on every site that I visit.

Maybe moderating duties are much lighter than they may seem from the outside?

Probably. There are a lot of tools and dashboards set up to make it pretty easy, like the 10K moderators get. There's a big orange (on SO) "mod-signal" that lights up at the top of the page when there are flags (so always), but it's only a few extra things to check when we visit the site.

Is SO more a part of your life as a Moderator than before?

Probably not for me. I think I spend about the same amount of time here, I just spend it differently. Marc might answer differently, since he's managed to maintain his position on the leader board and perform his duties as moderator.

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Examples of random emails please. Inquiring minds want to know. –  Aarobot Apr 9 '10 at 0:26
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@Aaronaught: Those are very private. –  Bill the Lizard Apr 9 '10 at 0:36
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Private like an offshore bank account, or private like the photos from your 21st birthday after the the 21st Bud Light? –  Aarobot Apr 9 '10 at 1:24
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@Aaronaught: Well, the Stack Overflow emails would be private like an offshore bank account, so the others must be... I've said too much. –  Bill the Lizard Apr 9 '10 at 1:32
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WOW... I have my next SO question... how do I rig GMail to send random emails? –  DVK Apr 9 '10 at 5:06
    
I like the "mod light" title! I'll have to remember that. –  C. Ross Oct 9 '10 at 16:54

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